Round-nation run to boost awareness of carbon emissions

OMINOUS MILESTONE::Four National Dong Hwa University students and their trainer will run for 23 days after carbon levels hit a record high 400ppm

By Lee I-chia  /  Staff reporter

Tue, Jul 02, 2013 - Page 3

The Environmental Quality Protection Foundation yesterday launched an around the island run campaign in Taipei to promote the importance of trying to reduce carbon emissions.

Gathering at the Liberty Square in front of the National Chiang Kai-shek Memorial Hall, five runners — four students from National Dong Hwa University and a trainer who has already completed a run around the the island — started out their 23-day trip early yesterday morning.

Foundation chairman Hsieh Ying-shih (謝英士) said the initial idea came from one of the four students — Liu Pin-hsien (劉品賢) — in an e-mail he wrote to the foundation about wanting to initiate a charity run to remind people of the need to safeguard the environment.

Hsieh said that as carbon dioxide concentration levels have already reached about 400 parts per million (ppm) worldwide, a new peak, it is important that people are made aware of the changing natural environment, notably global warming and climate change. Consequently, the runners will live a low-carbon lifestyle on their journey.

Based on research in Hawaii by the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the Scripps Institution of Oceanography published in May, the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere there has exceeded 400ppm for the first time since measurements began 55 years ago.

The foundation said it has collaborated with the Chinese Taipei Association of Ultrarunners to develop a smartphone app that will allow runners to keep track of their carbon footprint.